College of Business Administration
Steven P. Cesinger
Class of '84, Accounting
Dewberry Cesinger Holdings
During his years at Cal Poly Pomona, Steven P. Cesinger made quite an impact. He graduated summa cum laude and first in his class in 1984. Following receipt of his bachelor's degree, he enrolled in UCLA's Graduate School of Management where he was a Carter Fellow. Cesinger graduated in the top two percent of his class and received the Charles S. Offer Award for the Outstanding Graduating Finance Student. He credits Cal Poly Pomona with having a role in his current success.
Cal Poly Pomona's business program provided me with a solid foundation to pursue my MBA. It also gave me a real world education that enabled me to obtain a position with a small accounting firm while I was going to school, says Cesinger. I believe my grasp of business fundamentals that I learned at Cal Poly Pomona has played a major role in my success to date.
Currently, he is president of Dewberry Cesinger Holdings (DCH) and is also vice chairman of Dewberry Holdings, one of Atlanta 's leading real estate and private equity investment firms. In addition to overseeing all of the financial operations for Dewberry Holdings, Cesinger manages DCH, the merchant banking arm of Dewberry Holdings. Since founding DCH in 2002, he has completed over $1 billion in investments and financings for DCH and its affiliates.
His career path has been a model of upward motion. From his position as financial analyst for Northrop Corp., he moved to the general management consulting group of Ernst and Young, where he rose from staff consultant to manager in less than two years. In 1989, Cesinger joined the Investment Banking division of Sutro & Co. as an associate and was quickly promoted to vice president. In 1992, he co-founded Greif & Co., a Los Angeles-based investment bank that specializes in mergers and acquisition advisory services. In 1999, he was the firm's top producer and was a main player in major transactions such as the $490 million acquisition of Data Transmission Network Corporation by VS&A Communication Partners III, L.P., and the $205 million sale of Bumble Bee Seafoods to International Home Foods, a portfolio company of Hicks Muse. He was soon offered the position of managing director and head of U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray's Los Angeles investment banking office. There, he oversaw the firm's West Coast middle market merger and acquisition activities.
Cesinger's interest in investment banking and accounting was inspired by his father. My father was an executive compensation consultant and indicated that investment banking was a high-paying profession and that accounting would provide a good knowledge base to pursue that career, he says.
Cesinger has proven to be a strong supporter of his alma mater, offering assistance not only to students, but also to faculty and the College of Business Administration . In honor of his mother, he funded the E. Joan Cesinger Endowment, and in honor of one of his favorite professors, he set up the Donald F. Putnam Fellow in Accounting program. In addition, Cesinger has offered substantial contributions to the new College of Business Administration fund. Supporting education is a long-standing tradition in the Cesinger family. His grandfather was Dean of the University of Northern Iowa , a teaching college, and wrote many educational books for children. His mother, who co-wrote several of those books, also authored many of her own. Cesinger's grandmother was a high school teacher for many years.
I can think of no better way to show our appreciation for the benefits we have derived from Cal Poly Pomona than contributing to its future success, he says.
Among his many professional credentials, Cesinger obtained his CPA in California and was licensed as a registered principal by the National Association of Securities Dealers, Inc. He is a member of Cal Poly Pomona's Business Advisors and, in 2000, was inducted into the university's Accounting Hall of Fame.
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